Tuesday, July 29, 2008

How God gets tangibly involved in our journey.

July 30, 2008


I spoke several days ago with a former staff member.

He told about arriving at his then new and still current pastorate and sensing immediately that the big need they had as a church was to diversify. The church had moved away from people frequently in past years following "white flight." That pattern being stopped was a key, he felt, to the church's future. They must diversify and reach all peoples around them.

God agreed with that goal, and here in part, is what He did to be tangibly involved in their journey to diversify.

The process basically began this way -

A member was driving to church on a Sunday morning. As she did, she noticed a black family walking along together, all dressed up. She drove by them and then thought: Why are they walking? Where are they going? I could offer to help them.

Turning the car around, she pulled up beside them and asked: "Do you need a ride?"
"Yes," they responded, "we are going to church."
"Well then, jump in," she offered.
And they did so readily.

"What church are you going to?" she asked.
"We are not certain, m'am, in fact, we are looking for a church."
"Would you come to mine?" she inquired.

They said yes
....and have been coming ever since.

That was over 2 years ago.
And during that time they have become leaders in the church's diversification and health.

The story doesn't end there, for the woman who offered the ride wondered how it was that they had so readily accepted her invitation for a ride under those circumstances - from a stranger and with children in tow, to who knows where. So she asked that question and this was the response:
"Last night I had a dream and in that dream I saw our family all dressed up walking down the this street going to church. I saw a car exactly like yours pull up and a ride offered to us...as you did. I knew when it happened it was the Lord. So we got in without hesitating."

"Oh my," the woman said. "This morning I got ready for church and looked outside and saw my husband's vehicle rather sideways in the drive. The car I aways take to church was blocked in the garage, so I took his."

And voices in heaven said, "Everything worked out just perfect, Father. And another church is on the way to renewal." (This account in fact has propelled the church forward in rapid fashion into a present unfolding of God's life among them.)

Dreams, prompts, acts of love, trust, acceptance of "coincidences" and more....all part of the way that God gets tangibly involved in our journey. "I know the plans I have for you, says the Lord.."

So, head in the ways that the Lord is leading.......and keep your heart open!

Watch people...take advantage of coincidences...offer acts of love often...and expect to see Him join you on the journey.

It's a promise: "The pure in heart will see God."

With eyes wide open..........with you.

Monday, July 28, 2008

Blogdate: Monday, July 28, 2008


Ever think about how God does stuff?

I do and am fascinated very frequently by nature discoveries that reveal his process and power flow. I am always looking at the rocks and birds and clouds.

Sure, we all are so familiar with His greatness in the original creation that we sometimes limit Him to the quick stuff - the explosive and miraculous in the moment. Like in the seven days of creation, or in the instant healing, or the resurrection of our Lord. It is true some of the biggest stuff seems to happen quickly. Especially with God.

But what I am thinking today is about all the big stuff that happens so slowly...even with God.

It is one of those clear blue sky days today and the sun is unhindered in its life-giving work. It will not blast the earth with a moment of intense heat, but will radiate heat all day long...that will produce the change and life-giving qualities of light on the earth. Oh, and the plants, they will take on the light and transform it and at the end of the day have grown.....very slightly, but adequately with the whole season of life in view.

God has arranged that most often it takes time for us to do the really great stuff.

The great stuff happens normally through a very slow process.

Artists don't throw paint at the canvas...they sketch, and dab, and look and add. Sculptors chip away at the granite. Architects muse and redo and imagine and redo.

Ever preach a sermon that changed the church on the spot? Mmmm - I've gotten rave reviews for some things I've preached, but I've learned that preaching, pastoring, changing the habits and lives of people is a God thing, and even then it normally happens quite slowly.

So today, take heart in the often slow processes of God with His world. And...you might search your TO DO list not for the thing that will "make the biggest impact quickly," but the things that are "most in the flow of the way God does things." Things that will send rays of light and dobs of color into people's lives.

Do not be weary in doing well....for in due season you will reap a harvest. (Galatians 6:9)

Sounds like a word of hope for our lives.....for today.

Let's keep going - together.



Thursday, July 24, 2008

Lessons from Lakeland July 24 08

Hello again!

Last night we returned from 5 days in Lakeland, Florida, center of a current revival.

We were sent there by someone (from former ministry days) to see what God would do in us and how we would assess what is happening there.

Sunday morning we attended Stephen Strader's church - one of the core churches in the revival - and came away blessed by everything and excited for the evening ahead.

That night we drove the c12 miles out of town to "the tent" - a large auditorium on what appeared to be a county fair grounds. It was 5:30 - we had come early. At 7, worship began and was instantly charged with excitement. For 90 minutes we sang and clapped and danced and praised. Then it was testimony time and brief announcements and then to the teaching.

The primary teacher, Todd Bentley, was away in ministry and is in transition towards international ministry. We never did get to see or hear him - though we did see his Dad. :)

The pastor on deck that night began a lengthly exhortation that lasted until 11pm. Then there was an altar call and a time of prayer for three categories of need. Finally, around midnight, people stood on the perimeter of the gathering place and were prayed for rapidly one by one, by a leadership team - for "fire."

The next nights were to prove similar in structure and size - probably there were 1500-2000 there. It is hard to estimate. In the mornings a 10am gathering was held in town for the purposes of further worship and teaching.


1. There was a remarkable ingathering from all over the world - some 20 nations represented with more announced as being "on the way." "Busloads coming."

2. GodTV was there telecasting the evenings to an immense potential audience. This is wonderful and also seemed to be controling of the length and order of the gatherings. It seemed at times to put pressure on the nights to "keep it going." That seemed to me to limit other potential God-options. Cameras do spread the news but can also have their own interpretive control and impact.

3. The passion of the people was wonderful. Freedom and joy were in the air. All generations were represented well. This is not a certain generation in renewal - ie Jesus people. It did seem like it is a renewal time for the saints versus a time when lost people are coming to know Jesus.

4. Each night there were testimonies of healings that were wonderful. At times those who had been healed were present to attest to what has happened.

5. We attended the renewal when it was crossing the 100+consecutive-days mark. Leaders seemed elated to move towards the Brownsville 300+, but they also seemed weary. The challenges of such a gathering must be endless. (We were warned against enemy invasions in the evening - people who are bent on disruptions.)

6. Arminian or Calvinist? This gathering is southern and Arminian - deeply so. Personal responsibilities for renewal are underlined boldly. Taking notes, I jotted down 16 different focuses of exhortation one night. In truth....I became restless and weary. At times I felt far more driven by human energy than led by the Spirit. (And our response in visiting Brownsville years before was quite the opposite - led not driven.)

Perhaps this is why some (magazines such as Charisma and World) have adopted a positive but wait-and-see attitude towards this renewal expression.

We came away from these days
*refocused and thankful for what is happening in Lakeland.

*praying for their leadership - for wisdom and energy,
for their stewardship of their world-wide audience,
and especially for God to carry them more and more by His sovreign Spirit.

We pray too against enemy invasions,
pride that gets eveything off course,

and that the Presence of God will not be dulled by the human push.

Let Your Kingdom come!

David (and Jackie)

Monday, July 14, 2008


Every morning we get up and do a batch of stuff to our faces....
trimming & plucking,
dabbing & coloring,
brushing & flossing,
combing & spraying,
blowing, swabing
cleaning, shaving,
and most of all

In fact, if for some reason the day is already a total panic, that whole long list for me becomes just wash and brush.

There is always time for that.

Wash - because oils from within and dirt from without have come to lodge on my facial surface.

Perhaps none would notice...but I do.

I can feel it.

The grunge is upon me.

Need I go on?

1. Do you feel it when your soul has the grunge?
2. Do you wash it then?
3. Did you know that Ephesians 5:26 indicates that the word provides a washing when applied.

Ah, may we have the wisdom to "wash" our insides daily.

On days when some things "just all can't get done." May we wash - outside and in.

Washing - it's on my short list for every day.

You too?


Tuesday, July 8, 2008


Tuesday, July 8-08

Last night, Carson, my 2-year-old grandson, got a thorn stuck in his foot.
Shock. Pain. Tears. Yells. Limps. ...endless.
He would not be hushed - and would not let the foot with thorn be tended.
I see me in he.
I too pick up thorns...in my soul.
I too protest...and suffer...and hardly can be hushed...and sometimes it seems endless.
Sometimes I feel divided - gracious on the outside, groaning on the in.

How do we hush the soul? How do we deal with thorns? How do we become unified entirely?

Here is a path I've walked often:
1. Find, what can become for you, a quiet, comfortable, private space. Your body will turn up the "noise" too quickly if it is not comfortable.
2. Turn the noisemakers around you off. Let the space around you become an invitation to turn off the voices inside you.
3. Set aside time for the soul to become quiet. You "wound up" all day - now how about thirty minutes to "wind down?" It takes time for inner to follow outer.
4. When you are ready, actively begin to entertain the presence of Jesus. You can do this through just softly repeating His name. You can do this through reading some of His words such as the sermon on the mount. You can do this by simply talking through what is "noisey" inside you with Him.
5. If you are pained by a "thorn" - ask Him to deal with it...and show you what, if anything, you need to do to cooperate with His grace.
6. And now you are becoming more still inside. Linger. In this place, take time to listen. Let the Spirit of God speak to your soul. He loves to speak to those who listen.

Thorns....they are a part of life.

And they call us close to the One who said, "Be still and know that I am God."

Selah Dave

Thursday, July 3, 2008



If we all had a dollar for every time we've said this - we'd be sittin pretty for quite a long time.

Hello....is often just a way of not being rude....right? Or covering up the fact that that name has eluded us again. Or appearing to be friendly, even if we are on the run.

Well, in this blog I am hoping for a whole lot more - of meaning that is. :)
Like - a quick and easy way to do a Q & A.
Like - a creative way to express opinions in an informal and easy setting.
Like - a way to let others in on something neat in our lives that we sense God was in.
Like - passing on valuable info and connect points to others
Like - speeding the process and enriching it to staying in touch more regularly.

My focus will primarily be about church and personal development and stuff especially for men.

I plan to enter something enriching each week - my target day is Monday - aeap (as early as possible). Tune in by ten and we'll probably be talking (tibtawpbt). Nothing by 11?...on Wednesday?...pray! :)

Looking forward to joining up right here.

Living Life .. together -